Tenelean Wyverns

Tenelean Divider

Wyverns denote a perfect contradiction between beauty and danger. Their dragon-like bodies, their protectiveness for their home and young ones are met with a wildness unlike any other predator I have known. Their size is unequivocally massive, and to know an empire has found opportunity to tame these creatures, spells only this word. Dangerous.
~ Obras Torgella ~

Tenelean Divider
 

Territorial Horrors

Foul birds of prey, wyverns, massive in every sense of the word, make nest on a small archipelago south of Enendale known as the Shepherd's Isle. Here, an endless supply of fauna and wildlife coexist as part of a wyvern's natural selection, and though they have the capability to fly far from the islands, they often do not.   Instead, they continuously migrate across the isle, nourishing their newborn and hunting only when survival is necessary. To many Teneleans, they almost seem like the isle's guardians, protecting its natural beauty against any who seek to defile it. Even a full crew is not enough when performing an expedition here to even explore, as a single ship is subject to be blown apart by a stray wyvern.   Though wyverns live for so long, their bodies age quickly from infant into adult, and their maturity and intelligence is speculated to even equal that of humanity's.
 
Omitus, the Emberback
Wyvern Slayer by Stefan Koidl
 
Tenelean Divider

I may have never encountered one, but I'm sure to take one's word when they claim an emberback to be the most dangerous breed of wyverns. Just like any other children's tale or story of fiction, it is always the fire-breathing dragons you watch out for, for good reason! I do know the empire contains one of their own, but to what degree of control they have over it, I can not say.   Speaking of dragons, I wonder what sort of relationship these wyverns hold with their larger counterparts. Their wings sprout from their front legs unlike dragons whose sprout from their back. Could wyverns be a mutation from dragons? Or perhaps its a close relative with slightly more... magical background? Could it be because of divine action these animals look and behave so different?
~ Obras Torgella ~

Tenelean Divider
 
 

Sheperds

Today however, an operation takes place every month in which the Teneleans seek to procure wyvern younglings for their elite Wyvern Riders. Those who undertake this operation are known as Shepherds and they function in two roles. The first are the sentinels, those who fight the adult wyverns and distract them while the second role, the scavengers, collect eggs and newborns that are unprotected.   It is a dangerous profession, and no operation goes without casualties, and Vetta is one of the few who have served on countless adventures into the isle and survived. Because of the experience and tenacity she developed, she now leads the program as its commander.   At times, some wyverns have flown from the isle to pursue a shepherd's ship carrying eggs all the way to Enendale. However, the capital always has more than enough weaponry to send one back that comes too close, or to dispose of it completely.
 
Tenelean Divider

During my days as a youth, I traveled the empire, which at the time looked very successful in many ways. I even gained a seat as a chronicler for a journey to the Shepherd Isles where I saw the team in action. Our ship would have been torn apart if it weren't for the dozen of sentinels protecting it. You truly learn what it feels like to see someone be carried away by a wyvern.   But the couple eggs that were snatched looked beautiful. Some had blue spots across it while another was roughly striped with brown against a silvery white color. Of course, the eggs were as large as us at least.   Many, many years later, I witnessed the empire use those beasts to attack Podun. I saw those beasts lay waste to my beautiful hometown; if it weren't for Ravenna's elite and courageous troops, nothing would have been left. This may have been war, but I finally realized the purpose the empire used these animals for. Not as protectors or guardians, but as monsters.
~ Obras Torgella ~

Tenelean Divider
Lifespan
250 years on average
Average Height
4.5 meters (14.7 ft.)
Average Weight
350 kg (771.6 lb.)

Omitus, The Emberback

Both feared and prized, the emberback wyvern is the strongest and most aggressive of its species. An adult is a Sheperd's worst nightmare, while a youngling is one's most treasured dream. Very few have ever been captured, and more times than not, it's been ordered to simply avoid them due to their lethal fire breath.   Only one emberback has ever been captured. He is called Omitus, and his lethality is a testament to those who even now dare try to tame him. Like his kin, his ferocity is unmatched, and he can not be used for anything more than a death sentence for Tenelean criminals inside the imperial coliseum.
 
I won't stop until I slay the grayscale wyvern which killed my mother.
~ Vetta Haftist
 

Vetta, Dragon Sheperd

Leading the expedition program to harvest wyvern eggs from the Sheperd's Isle is Vetta. A very quiet, yet stern woman, she took up the mantle her mother left in the Shepherd Legion after being killed by a wyvern on a previous expedition.   This event caused her to grow hateful of wyverns and promised herself these beasts would bow down to humanity. She saw the empire as a very powerful tool and became a sheperd like the rest. Though she promised herself she would never ride a wyvern herself, she was perplexed when she found a hurt female one in the isle during an expedition.   Seeing no reason to hate this beast, she nursed it back to health in the empire and it soon after bonded with her and became her faithful mount.
 
If our wyverns are near, we own the battlefield. For whoever owns the sky wins the war.
~ Blaire Bivalur
 

Blaire, Wyvern Alpha

Blaire was born to a Tenelean Noble Family, much like the rest who argued against each other in the efforts to gain more favor with the crown. Even as a child, the way her parents interacted with other families was distasteful to her, and even grew to like one father more than her own, Richard Boulderdash, the only kind heart she ever met among the families.   Decades later after joining the Tenelean ranks, her skill rose her to serve under Richard as his second-in-command in the Wyvern Riders. But in 1546 AC, when the Wyvern Riders were all gathering within the Trispire Mountains, Richard suddenly disappeared.   Blaire was not furious, just confused; especially when she received the report signed by Wulfick Civilius V stating two things: That she was to become the new Wyvern Alpha, and that Richard Boulderdash had been labeled a national criminal of the empire.   Any questions she asked was only met with dodgy responses, but even still she was sure there was a concrete answer to why the empire suddenly mistrusted Richard, so she gradually grew to despise him too. As the new leader over all wyvern riders, she promised herself she would prove to be a stalwart leader for the empire, unlike Richard before her.   Currently, Blaire is the only wyvern rider who rides atop a dragon, rather than a wyvern.
 

Wyvern Riders

After capture, a young wyvern is raised in the mountains north of Kor until it establishes a bond with an in-training wyvern rider. Considered the elite of Tenelean military, the rider and wyvern share an emotional bond, combining the rider's tactical wit with the wyvern's brute strength and flight, making them feared on the battlefield.


Cover image: Dragoon by Jonathan Tiong

Comments

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5 Jul, 2019 23:50

I immediately felt captivated by the intensity of your world with this article! I would like to know more about the process of raising or training newborn Wyverns, and if there have been instances where a bond could not be made for one reason or another.

6 Jul, 2019 22:03

Thanks! I've actually got an article soecifically for Vetta in the works, and in that article I go deeper into the procedure of acquiring and taming Wyverns with her first-hand experiences. If you're still interested, keep an eye out for that!

~ Tristan
Grandmaster PBE
William Belley
6 Jul, 2019 03:59

wyverrrms. as sai mentionned, i'm curious to know how the taming goes. may they become more hostile toard their sheperds ? refuse to fight stray wyverns ? Also, are the sheperds having camouflage or faster means of traveling to escape with the eggs ? I think knowing more about that would be really nice.   NIce addition of the music too . (however, writing grey on grey in comments is super hard :'( )

6 Jul, 2019 22:06

I mentioned in my response above I'm working on an article for Vetta, and there I dive deeper into taming Wyverns. But as for who does it, sentinels and sheperds are only required to travel out to acquire them, it's other Teneleans who take over the taming process afterward.   I know the grey-text isn't practical, but this is a theme I rather enjoy, and I don't have the BBC skills necessary to change that.

~ Tristan
Grandmaster PBE
William Belley
7 Jul, 2019 00:36

oh good to know. i'll check on that in the close future.   I also know the struggle of bbc/css skills. i'm aiming to get better at it.

6 Jul, 2019 07:25

As a reader I am drawn in and full of curiosity: Are wyverns seen anywhere else on your world or is this variety the only one? Are there countermeasures to these flying troops or does the Tenelean Empire have a huge strategic advantage?   Writing error - End of your second paragraph: "a single ship is subject be blown apart" just needs: subject "to" be blown apart.

6 Jul, 2019 22:08

As far as anyone knows, this is the only environment where Wyverns exist. As per countermeasures, any single-target projectile is useful when fighting aerial targets, like ballistae, so the Teneleans have a unique strength, but it isn't something they can easily abuse either.   Thanks about the writing error, it's been edited above.

~ Tristan
Orlon
Orlon
6 Jul, 2019 20:57

Great images, your style and layout is so solid, and I really like the mood music links you provide. :)   Not sure why the spoiler tag for the New Leadership block, but I like where this is going. Good story hooks here, I can see a lot of ways I could use it in a storyline. I'm wondering how long until someone comes along who empathizes with the wyverns so much that they and their squad move back to the island and start fighting off the egg hunters?

6 Jul, 2019 22:09

Music is always something I enjoy, just a nice taste for you to listen to while you read!   I don't usually use spoiler tags for spoilers, I've just started adding them because it adds more interaction for you guys to do. Great questions too, questions I'm sure will be answered in future stories with the empire. :)

~ Tristan
Sage Dylonishere123
R. Dylon Elder
6 Jul, 2019 21:33

Oooo so when I say this I loved it. Now that I've ventured deeper I do so even more. It's a nice little thing that illistratess the way these people have come to be a part of the world. they are not separate but love side by side and clearly don't respect the balance as the wyverns are decreasing. my question, as I couldn't find it in the read. why is it they didn't breed them in the first place? Tell ne if I missed it cause i can find another question but this one is bugging me lol as others have said I'd like to see more about training and the inclusion of music works well too

6 Jul, 2019 22:12

That's because they never thought about it until now. It draws connection to the phrase, "you don't realize how much you love something until it's gone," because they've just now realized they're capturing more wyverns than are being breeded. And given a wyvern's risk to die in combat, they are starting to fall short of them, thus realizing they have other methods they can be using.

~ Tristan
Sage Dylonishere123
R. Dylon Elder
6 Jul, 2019 22:38

Oh I see. That's a clever way of looking at it. It makes sense too. awesome article man. I look forward to reading more. Be sure to drip those notifications

6 Jul, 2019 22:42

Well written article! right to the meat of it, and it takes you with it! I love it. I would have wanted to read little more about wyvern behavior in general (wild and tamed) and also about how social they are, do they live solitary lives or do they form packs, and if wyvern loses a rider, are they going to just get a next one or are they more picky about whom they bond with, if they are able to bond with another rider at all.   Over all, good stuff, keep up the good work!


Can I have a cookie? | Come and snoop around Melyria
8 Jul, 2019 20:05

I believe I mirror common sentiments when I state that this is a well written article and an enjoyable read. I like that it doesn't drag on, but is still full of engagement and interest, touching the fine points with plenty left to read and explore. A note I would make is: At the bottom of the sidebar under 'Current Status' the justify really stretched out the last paragraph. A few extra words should set it right.   Also, as a bit of trivia, did you know that wyverns are dragons with only two legs where their front legs have fused into their wings? A bit nitpicky, but a fun fact all the same.   I hope to see references to this in future articles. I'm very interested in how it ties with the rest of your world.   Very well written and worthy of a like.

8 Jul, 2019 20:32

That is definitely a fact I did not know about Wyverns! Definitely not the case in my world, since Wyverns are dragons which are much smaller and live a lot shorter lives, but a fun fact nonetheless.   I admit, justify can have its weakness when t stretches out the words, so I'll see if I can find some small filler phrases to add in with it, or perhaps break that paragraph apart to create more space. Thanks for enjoying the article (it seems everyone is which baffles me)!

~ Tristan
Sage SailingOcelot
Sailing Ocelot
6 May, 2022 07:07

Congratulations on the WA featured article!   I love the layout of your article, and the beginning quote which draws me in. I also like the speculation in your article about the origins of the wyvern. I wonder why Blaire rides a dragon rather than a wyvern? I wonder how wyverns and dragons interact with each other, and how wyverns show their intelligence, if they are as smart a humans?   If you enjoy 'spidering', I┬áthink your article has excellent opportunity to link to other articles, such as an article about Shepherd's Isle and dragons.This was a fun article to read, great work!

~~~~~~~~ SailingOcelot
6 May, 2022 09:35

Thank you so much! I admit this is one of those articles that I've been planning to update as I've continued to develop my world, and 'spidering' has definitely been one of those topics that I've intended to implement to make this article more interactive.   But, this feature caught me by total surprise, so I'm glad to know this article as it is is worthy of having such a high regard! :)

~ Tristan
6 May, 2022 15:29

I love everything about this! I'm always super into people who can share an emotional bond with another being. I think both the profession of Shepherds and Wyvern Riders are really interesting, too! I couldn't help but feel a little sad for the wyverns, though; if their maturity and intelligence are almost equal to humanity's, it must be very difficult for them to lose their young. I really love the world you're building!

6 May, 2022 20:29

Thanks for the kind words! It is indeed very difficult for wyverns to lose their young, which is exactly why a shepherd's job is a very dangerous one, because wyverns are extremely protective and territorial :) I'm glad you enjoy my world!

~ Tristan